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Writing Buddhas: The concepts of Time and Space

In-Gallery Poetry Reading and Lecture

Wednesday, December 5, 2018
6:30 PM–8:00 PM

The world-renowned Himalayan poet Yuyutsu Sharma will discuss the art of writing and share his recent work based on the exhibition The Second Buddha: Master of Time.

Using images and the exploits of Padmasambhava, who traveled to Tibet in the 8th century and established Vajrayana Buddhism, Sharma will discuss the art of writing through an exploration of Himalayan masters, and read new works from his collection, The Second Buddha Walk: I Walk Like an Old Man.

Sharma’s poetry explores concepts of time in Asian mythology and writing, including the treasure troves, or terma, that Padmasambhava left across time and space for his disciples. Discussing the guru-disciple relationships that are central to Hindu and Buddhist traditions, he evokes the motif of time and space to express the role of deities in shaping the future of humanity.

The talk will be followed by a book signing of his work.

Yuyutsu will be introduced by David B. Austell, PhD, associate provost and director of the International Students and Scholars Office at Columbia University.


About the Speaker

Recipient of fellowships and grants from The Rockefeller Foundation, Ireland Literature Exchange, Trubar Foundation, Slovenia, The Institute for the Translation of Hebrew Literature, and The Foundation for the Production and Translation of Dutch Literature, Yuyutsu RD Sharma is an internationally acclaimed South Asian poet and translator.

He has published nine poetry collections including A Blizzard in my Bones: New York Poems (Nirala, 2016), Quaking Cantos: Nepal Earthquake Poems (Nirala, 2016), Milarepa’s Bones, 33 New Poems (Nirala, 2012), Three books of his poetry, Poemes de l’ Himalayas (L’Harmattan, Paris), Poemas de Los Himalayas (Cosmopoeticia, Cordoba, Spain), and Jezero Fewa & Konj (Sodobnost International) have appeared in French, Spanish, and Slovenian respectively.

He has read his works at prestigious locations worldwide including Seamus Heaney Center for Poetry, Belfast, The Kring, Amsterdam, P.E.N, Paris, Knox College, Illinois, Whittier College, California, Baruch College, New York, WB Yeats’ Center, Sligo, Shi Shangzhuang, Hebei, China, Gustav Stressemann Institute, Bonn, Rubin Museum, New York, The Irish Writers’ Centre, Dublin, Lu Xun Literary Institute, Beijing, The Guardian Newsroom, London, Gunter Grass House, Bremen, GTZ, Kathmandu, Nehru Center, London, Beijing Normal University, Universidad Abierta Interamericana (UAI) / Indian Embassy, Buenos Aires, Gannon University, Erie, Frankfurt Book Fair, Frankfurt, Sahitya Academy, New Delhi, and Villa Serbelloni, Italy.

He has held workshops in creative writing and translation at Queen’s University, Belfast, University of Ottawa and South Asian Institute, Heidelberg University, Germany, University of California, Davis, Sacramento State University, California, Beijing Open University, and New York University, New York.


Artwork Credit
Padmasambhava; Tibet; 18th century; pigments on cloth; Rubin Museum of Art; Gift of Shelley and Donald Rubin; C2006.66.418 (HAR 866)

Tickets: $19.00

Member Tickets: $15.20

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Student Tickets: $14.00

For select programs the museum offers $14 student-rate tickets. These tickets are available in advance of the event and can be purchased online, over the phone, or at the front desk. Tickets must be redeemed in person with the presentation of a student ID. Limited to one ticket per student ID.